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Leadership: Wuhan Mayor Not “Authorized” to Release Epidemic Information to the Public Before

The Wuhan government has been criticized for failing to disclose critical information, including the severity of the virus and the fact that it could be transmitted from person to person. Wuhan Major Zhou Xianwang said that, before January 20, he had not been “authorized” to do so.

In an interview with the China Central Television (CCTV) on January 27, 2020, Zhou apologized for not releasing the epidemic information to the public earlier. He stated that “as a local government, I could not release information until I received information and authorization.” “Especially after January 20, the State Council had a meeting, defining it as a category B infectious disease but deciding to handle it as a category A infectious disease. It then asked the local government to be responsible and we could be therefore be more active in our work.”

He said that they decided to lock down the city to keep the virus within the city and not spread out, even though they might be blamed in the future. Ma Guoqiang (Wuhan Party Secretary) and he were willing to take the responsibility for this decision.

He didn’t mention when they knew about the information.

Both Caixin and The Beijing News reported his statement.

1. Excerpt in Chinese:

新京报快讯(记者 邓琦)1月27日,武汉市市长周先旺接受央视专访时表示,对于疫情披露不及时,希望大家理解,它是传染病,传染病有传染病防治法,要依法披露,作为地方政府,我获得信息之后,授权之后才能披露,这一点在当时不被理解。


Source: The Beijing News, January 27, 2020

2. Excerpt in Chinese:



Source: Caixin, January 27, 2020